TypograFriday: Sharp Curves

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Happy TypograFriday! [we were calling it Font-y Friday then went several weeks in a row featuring handlettering and typographic experiments and not fonts at all, so we’ve rebranded it. That said, this week it’s back to fonts.] Credits and writeup after the jump.

You know what we love best about curves? The lovely contrast when they come to points, or curve into sharp angles. The beautiful rhythm of curves and straight lines is after all what makes the Roman alphabet so pleasing to the eye. The fonts featured here are not geometrically rigid but classical and organic in form. They get their angles from their construction – from metal punchcutting, linocut, or angled pen – and the terrific interplay between that hard line and the curve of what is expected of the same letter makes for dramatic and beautiful letterforms.

  1. Origami – Carl Crossgrove, Adobe, 2007? As the name suggests, folded paper was an inspiration. Really digging the unusual but balanced contrast of thicks and thins.
  2. Maest – Eduardo Omine, 2005. Italic scripts are usually thought of to be super curved. This all-straight line version has a lot of energy.
  3. Albertus -Berthold Wolpe, Monotype, 1937. This type will forever be associated with The Prisoner to me. That said, I love the cuts. There’s something almost uncial about em.
  4. Brimley – Chank, 2006. Although a raconteur and jokester, Chank shoudn’t be ignored. He’s put out some lovely faces over the years. Brimley is a little 50’s advertising lettering (a style that is being revived at a breakneck pace these days) and a little psychological – that is, a script you’d spec if you wanted to imply something about the writer of it.
  5. Preissig – Vojtech Preissig 1912, adapted by FrantiÅ¡ek Å torm for Storm, 1998. Czech type designer Preissig bridged the gap between Art Nouveau and Expressionism, but his heavily angular punchcut letters are far more timeless than most faces of these movements.
  6. Alexander Quill – Jim Rimmer, RTF, 2006. The angles in this one are from the edge of the pen, so on some level it’s unlike the rest of these where it’s mostly punchcutting (and opens the door for Lydian, Optima, etc not to mention every blackletter face). However, its proportions and surprising sharp-to-angle contrasts makes it of a piece with the rest of the list. Spec this one when Lydian is looking too Catholic School or Albertus too The Village.
  7. Vendetta – John Downer, Emigre, 1999. This Venetian Old Face revival is, quietly and humbly, one of our favorite serif faces around, its details edging it in front of even mainstays like Adobe Garamond.
  8. Freight Micro – Joshua Darden, Garagefonts, 2005. This is our newest favoritist family. It’s magnificent from thin to black, and the italics even more interesting. I can’t get enough.

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